John Haynes, a Protestant, was cut out of three wills for marrying Helen, a Catholic, in 1961.

Just two generations ago, before the term multiculturalism became the norm, Australian society was polarised between two main groups: Protestants and Catholics. Religion was code for identity, with tensions fuelled by historical grievances that dated back long before the First Fleet. ‘Catholic’ meant Irish, and to an English Protestant Establishment, that meant trouble.

Winner of a Gold Medal at the New York Radio Festival (2010), this two-hour radio documentary series is based on 50 oral history interviews, archived at the National Library of Australia. The interviews below are accessible in full online, as unedited audio accompanied by a timed summary.

Crahan grave Fr William Crahan, a Catholic priest who ministered in Yass/Goulburn/Canberra area for over 50 years
 Harry Griffiths  broadcaster and child of a mixed marriage: father a Mason, mother a Catholic 
Kaye Ambrose, a Methodist, whose marriage to John, a Catholic, caused hostility from his family.


DOWNLOAD 2 x 53 min SERIES HERE as wma file (from University of Wollongong research site)

Composer Thomas Fitzgerald The music for Marrying Out was composed by Melbourne composer Dr Thomas Fitzgerald, with the assistance of the Faculty of Creative Arts at the University of Wollongong. An award-winning composer, conductor and performer, Tom plays piano, violin, viola and other instruments in the series. His song, ‘Marrying Out’, is performed by folk artist Kavisha Mazzella.  Lawrence Allen is the male vocalist.

My article for History Australia, Not In Front of the Altar… , provides rich context on the oral history collection behind Marrying Out. Scroll down here to download pdf.